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iStock_000003345380MediumAs businesses have come out of the Great Recession the demand for quality used equipment and used machinery has grown significantly. Websites like have become a go-to resource for business owners who are looking to buy and sell machinery to a wider audience beyond their local auction houses. These online machinery auction sites bring together savvy buyers and sellers who need equipment or capital to continue growing their businesses, and are now nearly industry standard places to price out and complete machinery and equipment transactions.
Know the Website
While reputable sites like and have gone to painstaking lengths to provide excellent service and security to their users, there are always scam or fraud sites that will spring up in the wake of a successful business model. Be sure to do some background research on the website you’re looking to buy or sell through. Often times, it can be as simple as calling the website’s customer service 800-number, or sending an email to their support team. If you get prompt, well-written responses you’re one step ahead of the game. Many fraudulent sites won’t even list a customer assistance phone line or will simply funnel emails to a noreply email address that’s never checked.
The work really begins once you’ve closed your auction. Now that you’ve locked in a buyer or won your bid, it’s imperative to keep open lines of communication between yourself and the other party. If we see transactions struggle or fall apart, most times it’s due to a simple breakdown in communication – problems or questions that could easily have been solved through a quick phone call or email. Being prompt and responsive to any buyer or seller as to your expectations can alleviate most problems from the start.
Secure Your Funds
To help put buyers and sellers at ease, consider the use of online escrow. Even used machinery and equipment carry will carry heavier price tags, so online escrow companies like PaySAFE can add that extra layer of protection that both buyers and sellers are looking for. Buyers are protected as their funds are not released until there is proof of shipping, or the item has arrived at its final location. Sellers are protected as purchase funds are verified and held upfront – completely removing the risk of non-payment, insufficient funds, fraudulent checks and credit card chargebacks – and are wired directly into their back account of choice upon release.
Ultimately, buying and selling online comes down to a little extra legwork. If you’re willing to put in a little bit more time to research the auction site itself and work with buyers and sellers from across the country (or the globe), there can be great benefit for both parties. For more information about buying and selling used machinery, see our posts on shipping heavy machinery internationally and figuring a fair price for used machinery.

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